The Shop the City Festival was a one day shopping extravaganza in Melbourne’s CBD which happened on Tuesday 1st December. Our top shopping destinations Melbourne Central, Emporium Melbourne, QV Melbourne, The Strand Melbourne, Melbourne’s GPO, Myer, and David Jones joined forces again to give Melbourne shoppers the very best in festive retail.
From shopping to wining and dining, entertainment to in-centre experiences, the CBD precinct was a hub of activity from 10am to 10pm!
The Shop the City Festival, was just the first of many events and happenings in the lead-up to Christmas from these amazing CBD retailers. Read on for more of what’s happening from now until Christmas!
Shop the City shopping extravaganza
I got my shop on in a marathon spree across the city, visiting my favourite destinations to launch the festive season at the CBD’s major shopping centres and department stores.
Here are all the iconic destinations I visited during Shop the City…
Emporium Melbourne is reimagining Christmas this year with the launch of its live forest complete with pine trees and forest sounds, where shoppers can take a reimagined Christmas photos, brought to life with animated creatures from the live forest.
My adorable Christmas photo was also turned into a moving .gif – perfect for Insta! Be sure to share your own forest photo and hashtag #emporiumchristmas for a chance to win a $1000 gift card!
Keep your eye out for the Emporium Bellhops on trikes around Melbourne. The centre will be posting riddles on their social media accounts with a photo of where the bellhops are, and prizes will be up for grabs for the first group of customers to find them (including things such as Emporium gift cards and passes to Kaya health club).
You can also explore the Myer Kids Emporium, the largest toy department in the city and enjoy free parking after 3pm weekdays and free parking all day across both Saturday and Sunday up until Christmas Eve at the centre.
And don’t forget to create your own wish list from Emporium Melbourne’s gift guide for the chance to win a $2000 gift guide!
Emporium Melbourne haven’t forgot about those who are stuck at work either – they’ll be trading until 9pm every night in December. Perfect for all of you night owls too!
A short stroll from Emporium Melbourne, and we arrived at The Strand Melbourne.
On Tuesday evening, some of the fabulous The Strand Melbourne stores hosted mini VIP parties with exclusive retail offers (and the first 50 customers who spent $150 in centre scored themselves an exclusive Christmas goodie bag!)
One of my favourite shopping destinations in Melbourne, The Strand is home to some fabulous retailers including Desigual, Feathers, funkis, Gorman, Habbot (my fave!), Midas, The Bathing Box Swim and Veronica Maine. The Strand retailers will have some great festive season offers throughout December, so head into the centre and get your shop on.
A few steps with my (many) shopping bags across Lonsdale Street, and we arrived at Melbourne Central!
The centre was pumping with excited beauty queens heading to the newly opened Sephora Melbourne store (heads up -they’re offering free mini makeovers for Christmas!) and I was transfixed by the amazing light show in Melbourne Central’s iconic Glass Cone. It was like a giant snow cone come to life!
I also loved customising our very own ‘Melbourne Girl’ Kit Kat at the Kit Kat Studio where you can choose your favourite chocolate, decorate it with a variety of different toppings and then have it specially gift wrapped. It’s definitely one pop-up not to miss!
What else can you expect from Melbourne Central this Festive Season?
- Take part in the Christmas Cupcake Workshop at Cupcake Central, where you can add icing, ornaments and accessories to a delicious cupcake.
- Visit the Art of Christmas Wrapping Station to wrap your Christmas gifts, stocked with custom designed paper by Emily Green and STREAT’s Alex Hotchin.
One of the most beautiful of the CBD’s retail destinations, Melbourne’s GPO is lighting up the city this festive season as part of the City of Melbourne’s Christmas Lights Projections installation onto Melbourne Town Hall – which is being transformed into a huge Christmas Gift.
And famous for their Laneway food vibe, don’t forget to discover Melbourne GPO’s food offering with Ca De Vin, Gekkazan, Mama’s Buoi and Federal Coffee Palace.
It wouldn’t be a trip to the city over Christmas without a visit to the Myer Christmas Animated Windows, which this year celebrates the 60th anniversary of this iconic Melbourne tradition. It is free to visit and open every day until 3 January 2016
And every Christmas lover needs to experience the Myer Christmas Giftorium on level 6 – it’s an amazing one-stop shop for all festive gift giving needs. It’s fair to say that Myer have got it covered in terms of gift giving this year!
Myer’s extensive personal shopping service is on hand with a Gift Squad of expertly trained Gifticians to help customers choose the perfect present. You can also take advantage of the ‘All Wrapped Up’ Christmas Gift registry, gift ordering on iPads for products not available in-store, the Shop and Drop parcel service, and the ‘Shop, Wrap and Deliver’ service.
Along with some amazing pressies, Myer has a whole range of personalised gift ideas, including your very own personalised Nutella jar. I am not ashamed to say that my personalised ‘Prue’ Nutella jar has already got a serious dent in it!
There’s also special pop-up shops from Disney, Star Wars, Marvin’s Magic along with Australia’s only Build-A-Bear shop-in-shop, personalised Peanuts cartoon prints and customising services on a range of products from leather goods to business shirts, bathrobes, towels, Santa sacks and Christmas stockings.
And after you’ve found the perfect gift, don’t forget to visit Santaland to ride the Santaland Express, have your photo taken with Santa and write him a letter and post it to the North Pole with your Christmas wish list.
David Jones certainly know how to bring the magic of Christmas in store too – you definitely can’t miss the David Jones’ Windows and follow the Christmas Elves from James Gulliver Hancock’s ‘Colour Me In Christmas’ book as they collect gifts from all around the world.
Santa can be found in residence in the enchanted Magic Cave on Level 5 of the women’s store – the mums and dads out there will be happy to hear that you can book online, or come in store and leave your name and number and Santa’s helper will send you a text when he’s ready. Too easy!
And gift giving is made easy at David Jones too – meet a personal Gift Guru and tap their extensive knowledge to help find the perfect gift! David Jones’ Personal Shopping team can also help create your bespoke Christmas edit. Book an appointment and relax in the sumptuous private suite away from the Christmas bustle, as expert personal shoppers help find exactly what you’re looking for.
And a must visit is the brand new luxury accessories floor featuring boutiques by some of the world’s most premium brands including Bottega Veneta, Valentino and Saint Laurent and David Jones’ first fine jewellery offering. The imported Italian marble and striking lighting is worth a visit in itself. Bag and shoe heaven!
As the final stop on my amazing Christmas shopping journey around the city, we headed to QV Melbourne to experience the ‘QV Outdoor Cinema’! Launched in conjunction with ‘Shop The City’, I settled down with my delicious Schnitz and Movenpick dinner for a free screening of The Devil Wears Prada in QV Square.
The perfect initiative for those long balmy Summer nights the QV Outdoor Cinema will run every Thursday to Sunday evening from 8pm until late featuring a host of Christmas classics; from Home Alone to Bad Santa and Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas to Will Farrell’s Elf, and other classics including The Matrix and Guardians of the Galaxy.
And all the pooch lovers out there will love this – on Saturday 12 December customers are invited to bring along their pooches for a special screening of ‘Best in Show’. The evening’s festivities will include a ‘Best Dressed Dog’ competition, with all proceeds from the ticket sales to go to The Lost Dogs’ Home. See qvcinema.com.au for the full program and to book tickets.
So Melbourne shopping lovers, say hello to extended trading hours throughout December and great offers in the lead up to Christmas!
Have a very Merry Christmas – filled with lot’s of shopping cheer!